Times Read: 323
This is an amazing light with a few caveats. I bought the X7 hoping it would be my main flashlight but the X7R edges it out. The grip is better with finger grooves to help orient the flashlight in your hand. Plus there’s a lanyard hole now (yay!). For me the X7 was difficult to find the on/off button in the dark because the handle had no tactile orientation on the handle. This especially hard if you’re trying to do this one-handed and lose grip dropping the flashlight (why no lanyard is beyond me). The X7R with it’s lanyard and finger indents make finding the button so much easier.
The X7 and X7R side by side are almost identical in weight and size (X7R is 2mm taller) so nothing to see here. In fact the beam profiles are the same. Also somewhat disappointingly noticeable is the brightness is essentially the same between the two. I guess a 1/4 -1/3 stop difference in light output is very difficult to see but usually I can see it. In this case I can’t. I will have to measure to confirm.
The only two advantages the X7 has over the X7R (well, 3 if you include pricing with batteries) is the X7 originally came out with a neutral white version (which I think has been discontinued-but no one has confirmed) and removable batteries. The neutral white really makes a difference on the eyes after using the other cool white lights that I have. The X7R doesn’t give you a user replaceable battery pack like the SR 9x or X6 series so you’re stuck with the flashlight when one of the individual 18650 batteries in the pack starts to go soft on you. So if you don’t mind the ergonomics (of the X7) and battery replacement (of the X7R) issues the X7 might be a better option. To me the newer handle/lanyard makes it all worth it. I suppose now the Olight won’t need to carry both the X7 and the X7R so the X7 days are probably numbered. (Maybe a X7a?)
BTW, the X7R is using the USB C standard for charging now. So yet another charging dongle to deal with. Progress…